There are a lot of things that people picture when they think of Northern California, but I doubt any are as quintessential as that of the redwood forest and the beach. This combo has become popular for my engagement shoots, especially for those who, like Taylor and Reid, did not grow up here. They wanted to showcase the beautiful area that they now live in, and doing their shoot at Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park and Natural Bridges State Beach seemed a great fit. We normally start shoots in the forest earlier in the day than other shoots, as it is usually as dark as twilight beneath the towering trees, even in mid-day. And challenging as the light is to work with, it can be truly magical. We meandered slowly through the redwood grove stopping to grab photos at pretty spots. We made it down to the river, and I was super excited to convince them to venture into the (freezing cold) water with me (I didn’t actually have to do a *ton* of convincing). Then we dried off and warmed up by walking back towards the front of the park and the beautiful meadows. I love how the sun hits this area in the evening, and we caught it at the perfect time. Finally, we took the half-hour drive through Santa Cruz to Natural Bridges State Beach. This is a great spot for photos – a little out of the way of downtown, with cool rock formations and that glowy sunset light. It was so fun to work with them on this shoot, and while the wedding is a ways away, I think the time will fly by and I’ll be sharing those photos before you know it :).